The cloud has become big business. It stores documents in a special space on the internet and allows authorized people to access those documents from anywhere in the world. Usage and applications of the cloud are increasing and changing all the time. Every business should be monitoring the latest trends to ensure they do not miss out on marketing opportunities.
The cloud is a fairly recent addition to the arsenal of a successful business and as such there will need to be a constant review of its integration with business. This is particularly true now as there is much confusion over the cloud. It is often used as a marketing term when it has no real involvement with the marketability of a company.
It is essential that a strategy is developed to ensure the business makes the most of new applications. The following are five of the most important trends:
A decision framework
There are potentially many benefits from the use of cloud technology. Business will need less capital invested in IT as their data is stored online and potentially less IT professionals. Funds will be freed up to invest in business innovation. Companies must ensure they have a decision framework set up to weight the benefits above against the potential issues. Cloud technology is not as secure as in house IT systems. There also remain concerns about the performance and availability of space in the cloud as more and more businesses get on board. Contracts locking in businesses will need to be carefully scrutinized.
This is the term which has been used to describe merging online cloud technology with the internal infrastructure of a business. It is possible that, in time, there will be one cloud made up of many cloud platforms. Each platform would be sculptured to a specific business requirement. Businesses need to focus their energies on the most effective ways to link their business applications to the cloud. Whilst they are doing this cloud providers need to unify the standards and guidelines they operate by. This will ensure a useable hybrid environment is created.
The more companies looking to use the cloud the more there will be a need for a brokerage service. As the cloud develops and changes, a specialized brokerage will be best place to provide advice and support to businesses wishing to move forward with the latest technology. In-house IT will be much less in demand as businesses rely on decent brokers to guide them through the maze of jargon and ensure they get the package they need.
This is an incredibly complex area involving inter-country issues. Cloud providers have to ensure the data is only transmitted between designated safe places. The data has to remain protected and the provider must know where all its data is. Cloud providers have dedicated teams to ensure they understand and comply with the ever changing regulations.
The cloud will evolve from simply being an easy to access storage space to the centre of many applications. Businesses who wish to be at the forefront of technology and reap the benefits of cloud computing will need to design new applications which work with the clouds abilities and build upon them to create the perfect software package for each business. When these applications are generated it will be possible to transfer large amounts of current workloads into the cloud to deliver top class applications.
Cloud computing and future influence
At present, businesses and people are restricted in what the cloud can do simply by the fact that the cloud provider handles all the data implementation and operational systems and issues. For a business to truly maximise its potential with the cloud it will need to start applying these same principles to the way data is handled within the business. This will increase the agility and efficiency of any business as all applications will be aligned and handle data in the same manner.
There’s no doubt the cloud is here to stay and will be of great benefit to many. It will provide a competitive edge and needs to be adopted by companies worldwide. Is your business to adopt the cloud?